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Could Obamacare Regulation Allow the FDA to Tax Your Smartphone?

A regulation attached Obamacare may allow the government to tax smartphones and tablets because they can be used as medical devices. Under the Affordable Care Act, medical device manufacturers carry a 2.3 percent tax.

Vice chairwoman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee

, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) said on America’s News HQ that in 2011, the Food and Drug Administration revealed they were looking into the regulation.

The IRS has assigned its taxing authority to the FDA on this issue, making it a possibility that they'd be able to tax tablets, smartphones and health care apps. For example, apps marketed to help with things diet control, monitoring diabetes or blood pressure, and collecting medical data could be considered taxable medical devices.

“It is going to drive up the cost to consumers and it’ll drive up the cost of your cell phone,” Blackburn forewarned.

The Energy and Commerce Committee has written to the FDA, asking them to respond by March 15 to clarify their intentions. Blackburn plans on putting up a fight, saying, “We’re going to do a hearing on this at Energy and Commerce very soon. I have draft legislation ... coming out which would be an express prohibition, prohibiting the FDA from getting into these mobile applications as a health care medical device.”

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